When Impressive Records Draw Vaguely Interested Sighs

By Noah Davis 

Hey look: A bunch of articles discussing how no one cares that the UConn women’s basketball team is about to break UCLA’s record for the longest winning streak in Division 1 basketball history.

On Sunday, the Huskies will take on Ohio State in Madison Square Garden. Win and they tie John Wooden Bruin’s 88-game winning streak.

Christine Brennan of the USA Today is downright apoplectic this isn’t a bigger deal: “If a men’s team were in UConn’s position, going for its 88th consecutive victory, coverage likely already would have reached the saturation point with countdown clocks, hour-long specials and grainy retrospectives.”

She’s right, although she needs to admit that women’s basketball doesn’t draw the same number of fans that the men’s game does. That’s just a fact. But so is the reality that UConn is on the verge of doing something historic and it’s getting underplayed in the media. For example, Sunday’s game will be shown on ESPNU.

ESPN Sr. coordinating producer Tina Thornton defended the decision.

“You have to consider that ESPNU is in 73 million homes and it’s a network dedicated to college sports. And this is a huge college sports moment and it’s in a really significant amount of homes. I guess people can say all they want about where we put it, but I believe it’s a great place to put it and a great vehicle to deliver a great game.”

But things are looking up. Assuming UConn wins, Tuesday’s attempt to break the record will be broadcast on ESPN2. And Frank Dreford cares. At least we think he does.

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